The Spurs are finally getting the tanking memo

Jakob Poeltl, San Antonio Spurs
Jakob Poeltl, San Antonio Spurs / Ronald Cortes/GettyImages
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Usually, when a team enters a basketball season with expectations of a shameless tank, they never even approach the .500 mark. This year’s San Antonio Spurs were supposed to be one of the worst teams in the league in pursuit of probable generational talent Victor Wembanyama, but ever since they dropped their debut game to the Hornets, they have been winning.

Ten games into the season, they finally return to the .500 mark. With a tough stretch of the season ahead, they could quickly fizzle out and run aground, landing them top lottery odds in the upcoming NBA Draft. 

Keldon Johnson and Devin Vassell have been playing like the stars they’ve slowly become, both hovering around the 20ppg mark on efficient shooting. Jakob Poeltl continues to cement himself as one of the best centers in the league, Jeremy Sochan is looking like one of the smartest draft picks with every game he plays, and even Tre Jones is showing that he can be a serviceable point guard in the league. 

The Spurs season is going better than fans could have hoped

It’s pretty clear that all they’re missing is some star power, and both Scott Henderson and Wembanyama could be the missing piece that brings this franchise back to contention. The Spurs are going about their tank flawlessly.

They showed that they can pull wins out of their dark recess against good teams like the Wolves and Sixers while dropping games to more mediocre teams like Toronto and the Hornets. They kept it close against the Clippers for most of the game, leading by double digits at points, but ultimately added a game to the loss column, helping their draft odds. 

From a fan perspective, it’s hard for me to actively wish for the team I love to lose. At least I can take some solace in knowing that the future stars are developing well, but not fast enough that the team ultimately becomes a middling, first-round exit. Johnson and Vassell will reach their peak as a star becomes a star, and if the Spurs want, Poeltl can be flipped for more young potential or stay around as a cornerstone to solidify a well-rounded lineup. 

Next. Grading Jeremy Sochan’s first 6 games with Spurs. dark

The shocking start the Spurs got off to should be fizzling out, and things can get back to plan. At least this San Antonio squad showed what we have to look forward to, now they need to go and get their guy.

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